Numerical Milestones

2011 was a year full of milestones for my family and for our church. Some of those milestones are best captured by the numbers . . .

Four. That’s how many sets of reading glasses I now must have scattered around my life. One for the kitchen table to read the newspaper, one on my desk at work to prepare sermons, one in my car so I can read a restaurant menu, and one extra in case I lose one of the other three.

Fifty. That’s how old I turned in 2011. It’s also how old my own father was when I was born. In this case, not like father like son.

1,659. That was our average worship attendance for 2011, up from 1,540 in 2010. After a couple of years of flat growth, this increase is deeply rewarding. Special kudos to our 11:30 crowd which has grown more than any other.

One. That’s the number of new mission statements at Good Shepherd: Inviting all people into a living relationship with Jesus Christ. The statement brings clarity, focus, and unity to all we do . . . and we’ve only just begun to flesh it out.

Two. That’s the number of graduates in my family, as my son Riley graduated from high school and my daughter Taylor graduated from college.

$50,191. That’s the average weekly offering at Good Shepherd in 2011. We had unusually strong December giving — a phenomenon common in many churches but one we haven’t had here before — that raised us above the $50,000 per week mark for the first time ever.

192,320. That’s the number of meals you packed on October 30 when we worshipped by feeding.

Ten. That’s the number of message series in 2011: My Life Stinks, The Forgotten God, Lines, Jesus Tweets, The Comeback Kids, Elements, Boundaries With Kids, It’s A Living Thing, Fashion Statement, and Christmas Lights.

1,440. That’s the number of shoeboxes you donated in November through our partnership with Operation Christmas Child.

27. That’s the anniversary Julie and I celebrated in June.